Scandalous Freedom


In his book A Scandalous Freedom, Steve Brown provocatively writes:

They lied to you about being a Christian. When you first “joined the club,” they promised you’d be set free. But let’s get honest, you’re not free. In fact, you’re religious, afraid, guilty, and bound. What’s worse, now that you’ve been in the club awhile, you’re stuck pretending you’re better than you are. And worse than that, you prefer the security and rules of your self-imposed boundaries. It’s time for a change. You need Scandalous Freedom.

There is no question in my mind that Steve Brown is correct.

So many Christians are imprisioned by their own consciences.  What I think is startling about this is that most don’t even seem to be aware of their spiritual and emotional bondage.  In fact, since most people they know are in the same condition, they assume this is the norm, and that THIS is the freedom for which Christ came to set us free!  And even more perplexing is that, when faced with the radical nature of the gospel, many seem to prefer this state of existence to the freedom offered and secured by the gospel!

I see it all the time. I do it all the time.

But Steve Brown winsomely, humorously, and profoundly, calls it like it is.  And he offers us a path to freedom. It is not a path Steve has blazed. He is one, of many, who has simply labored to uncover the path for us that Jesus laid out. Sadly much of what Jesus paved seems to have been covered over by the garbage of religious tradition and fundamentalism.

Listen Steve Brown’s related podcast series: Scandalous Freedom.

10 Gospel-centered Questions


Here are 10 questions to ask yourself – and maybe those few closest to you – that help uncover rivals of Christ as the functional savior of your heart:

  1. What are you desiring more than anything else?
  2. What do you find yourself day dreaming or fantasizing about?
  3. What lies are you subtly believing that undermine the truth of the gospel?
  4. Are you astonished with the gospel?
  5. In what ways have you recently made much of yourself and little of God?
  6. Is technology stealing attention from your family?
  7. Is work replacing your spouse’s place in your heart?
  8. Where do your thoughts drift to when you enter a social setting?
  9. What fears are paralyzing your heart from enjoying God?
  10. What consumes your thoughts when you have alone time?

Notice that many of these questions assumes some level of guilt. Others are simply good guages of our priorities.  That’s what makes them good gospel-centered questions – questions that continually keep our hearts centered on the gospel.  

Remember the gospel has two aspects – one positive, one negative.  Paraprasing Jack Miller, the gospel reminds us:

  • You are much greater sinner than you would ever dare admit, even to yourself.
  • You are loved far more by God than you would ever dare dream.

Believing the gospel frees us to admit our flaws, and drives us to explore the love of God demonstrated in the Cross of Christ. So go ahead, ask yourself the above questions.